“When you know yourself you are empowered. When you accept yourself you are invincible.” -Tina Lifford
I've been on a constant journey searching for who I really am and what I really want my entire life. I'm pleased to say I found myself in 2017.
This year was a blessing, to say the least. I've seen new beginnings as a blogger, new heights as a couple, new challenges as a student, and new dreams as an individual.
"I found I was more confident when I stopped trying to be someone else's idea of beautiful and started being my own." -Remington Miller
Before 2017 began, I struggled with self-identification. I didn't know what I wanted to do after college, I didn't know what I was passionate about, and I didn't know who I really was. I made a goal to focus on myself this year and ran with it. Not only did I choose to focus on myself, I chose to grow.
In 2017, I found a girl inside myself that I avoided in the past. I tried to be someone I wasn't, I stayed in my shell, and I let the world tell me who I was. This year, I found Jordan Shiley. I found a smart, headstrong, driven girl that doesn't care what the world has to say about who I am or what I want.
I cannot even begin to explain the amount of wonderful, positive opportunities I was given this year. I do, however, want to focus on a few moments that made my year unforgettable:
In February, my puppy turned a year old. A small step for mankind, but a giant step for Jordan. My child is growing up.
In April, I saw John Mayer for the ninth time and got floor seats. It was the most beautiful night of my existence. I also cried during Slow Dancing In A Burning Room for the ninth time.
In May, College Fashionista sent me to California with thirteen other girls who truly changed my life. They are the reason I had the confidence to start this blog in the first place, and I owe them the world for that. In December, we met up again and picked up right where we left off. I am beyond grateful.
In June, I started my blog. I was skeptical at first, as people from my small town often made fun of me for the things I was doing with fashion and influencing. Rightfully, I ignored it and did my thing. Now, six months into it, I am overwhelmed with the amount of support and opportunity this endeavor has thrown my way. I've gotten to collaborate with a number of creative people (and now friends), meet a great deal of like-minded individuals, and grow my professional profile all while doing what I love.
In July, I finally got to celebrate my twenty-first birthday and it's been a party ever since.
In August, I celebrated my five year anniversary with the boy I've had a crush on since the seventh grade. That's right, my middle school crush and high school sweetheart is now the best thing that's ever happened to me. More seriously, we moved in together that same month. Living with him in our studio apartment is the easiest and best life decision I've made thus far. I truly believe that at twenty-one years old, I am fortunate enough to have a love that some may never experience in an entire lifetime. My life is a Nicholas Sparks novel half the time.
In December, I had my first big girl job interview. I didn't get the job due to the hiring timeline, but the fact that I got to interview with my dream company is a blessing. I'm now recommended to HR for other positions opening up, so my dream may not be so far away anymore.
Throughout the entire year, I have made a point to stop putting effort into people who don't care about me. Last year, I found myself trying to fit in with people who barely gave me the time of day. This year, I've been doing my own thing and benefitting from it. I keep my circle small and I like it that way.
Amazing is an understatement for 2017. With such a grand year, I can't imagine what's in store for 2018. I graduate in May, start 'real life', and hopefully get to live out my dream. On a smaller scale, I'm setting a few simple goals for next year:
Move to the city
Land a full-time job
Learn to teach yoga + make time for my own practice
Experiment with my new camera (learn the basics + explore lightroom)
Grow to 10k on Instagram
Be more comfortable alone
Exercise for health instead of vanity
Reach a full year of pescatarianism
What are your goals for the new year? How have you grown in 2017? Let me know in the comments below.
Thanks for reading and HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Peace, Love, Just Jordan. xoxo
All photos by @huntercarrico
Thank you for making my year memorable
Tylar, Loki, Katelyn, Chandra, the Fam, JMU Group Exercise
Thank you for making my year creative
@cfashionista, @joinpalm, @jmufashionclub, @eleftheria.gia/@elefthographia, @mirand0wl, @thomas__nguyen, @huntercarrico, @kfcvf, @hannahdekle, @leviryman, @manoaraine, @dlwng/@dlwngcreative, @matthewloftonphotography, @konnorwithakay, @jaythaute
Thank you for making my year inspired
Gab Scherer, Gabrielle O'Donnell, Val Veak, Avery Rizotto, Mackensey Moor, Norah Murphy, Britt Hughes, Kalynn Smith, Monica San Luis, Sam Neira, Ashton Guevara, Alison Relyea, Maddy Haller